Kojey Radical is a London-based musician, spoken word poet, and visual artist with a striking aesthetic vision and deft, poignant lyrics. His new song “Gallons”, produced by Greatness Jones and featuring UK rapper PW, addresses issues of class and race. “‘Gallons’ is the kind of record I want played very loudly at my funeral,” says Radical, “It’s how I feel every time I see my brothers get stopped and searched or when I hear about another person of colour amount to nothing more than commemorative hashtag. ‘Gallons’ is a uniting of class, it’s a celebration of struggle. The conversation doesn’t die when you kill us. Seeds of positivity will ensure that the beauty in all our differences will come together and grow for future generations.”
Radical started writing poetry four years ago, and began to turn it into music a year later. While lyrics are always important to Radical, “Gallons” shines a light on his distinctive flow, emphasising not just his words but the way he says them. Still, don’t call him a ‘UK rapper’ just yet. “I don’t rap,” he says, “I write poems, the music comes later.” Radical’s artistic practise extends to PUSHCRAYONS, an arts collective and creative media agency that he started alongside Craig Most Popular Human. “It houses many different spectrums of talent,” says Radical, “For us it was less about who and more about what we’re creating.”
Radical and Craig Most Popular Human both headed up the creative direction of the “Gallons” video, which was directed by long-term collaborator THE REST. The clip, a JFC Worldwide Production, depicts Radical in a version of London that looks both at once contemporary yet also futuristic and dystopian. “We approached the shoot for ‘Gallons’ in the same manner that we shot ‘Bambu’, to channel that same energy and be less calculated and structured, a bit more down to earth than the last two,” says THE REST. The video ends with a more uplifting shot of Radical with his nephew.
“As cliché as it sounds, life and the everyday things we encounter play a big part in shaping what I choose to write about,” Radical says, “The conversations we have in private, the thoughts we share out loud. The way we walk, talk and see the world as an entire generation provides an endless amounts of inspiration.”